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Convicted cannibal cop killer found dead in prison

LONDON -- An Italian man sentenced to life in prison for strangling a British police officer to death during a sex game and then cooking and eating parts of his body has died in jail, according to British media.

According to one report, in the British tabloid The Mirror, Stefano Brizzi, 50 was found hanged in his cell at the Belmarsh prison in southeast London on Sunday.

Her Majesty’s Prison Service (HMPS), however, would only confirm to CBS News that Brizzi had “died in custody” on Sunday and an official investigation was underway. HMPS gave no details on the circumstances of his death.

Brizzi, a former IT worker who had developed a methamphetamine addiction, met 59-year-old police officer Gordon Semple on the Grindr dating app and invited him to his apartment in London. There, according to court testimony, Brizzi killed Semple, attempted to dissolve parts of his body in acid and cooked other parts to eat.

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Police forensic officers work at the scene after the remains of PC Gordon Semple, 59, were found at a property in south London, April 8, 2016. ap

According to the Press Association news wire service, Brizzi admitted in court to having been inspired by a scene in the popular “Breaking Bad” television series.

He was convicted on evidence including chopsticks carrying Semple’s DNA, and one of the victim’s ribs found in a trashcan in Brizzi’s apartment with bite marks that, according to an expert in court, matched the defendant’s lower jaw.

Much of Semple’s body was found dissolving in a bathtub full of acid at Brizzi’s home.

Brizzi was only sentenced to prison -- a life sentence with a mandatory minimum of 24 years -- three months ago.

While he admitted to trying to dispose of Semple’s body, Brizzi told the court that he could not remember eating any of the police officer’s body.